Complex Torts & Product Liability


International Dioxin Developments
July 20, 2016 | Commercial Litigation | Complex Torts & Product Liability
One Boiler Remains Offline at Durham York Energy Centre One of two boilers at the Durham York Energy Centre (“DYEC”) remains offline following reports of high emission limits for dioxins and furans from that boiler. Results for the second boiler at the facility were below the allowable limits. Background The DYEC is a new, state-of-the-art …
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The Science of Dioxin
| Commercial Litigation | Complex Torts & Product Liability
Kentucky Researchers Say They Have Identified Potential Link Between Pollutants and Human Disease Risk Michael Petriello, a postdoctoral fellow working with researchers at the University of Kentucky Superfund Research Center (the “U.K. S.R.C.”), is reporting that he discovered a mechanism that may link exposure to environmental pollutants to increased human disease risk. Background Michael Petriello, …
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Dioxin: Legislative Developments
| Commercial Litigation | Complex Torts & Product Liability
Updated Toxic Substances Control Act Will Have Broad Impact on Chemical Manufacturers, Other Businesses, and Consumers An update to the federal law known as the Toxic Substances Control Act has been passed by Congress and signed into law by President Obama. Among other things, the new law, known as the Frank R. Lautenberg Chemical Safety …
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Dioxin Developments
| Commercial Litigation | Complex Torts & Product Liability
Study Finds Glyphosate Was Most Common Active Ingredient Used In Invasive Plant Management on Public Lands Researchers from the University of Montana working with Canadian scientists have estimated that, in the United States, half a million hectares of public wildlands were sprayed with herbicides in 2010, representing 201 tons. Background Viktoria Wagner, Pedro M. Antunes, …
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Dioxin: Regulatory Developments
June 21, 2016 | Commercial Litigation | Complex Torts & Product Liability
EPA Proposal to Remove Wildwood Site from NPL Continues to Stir Community The recent proposal by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (“EPA”) to remove an eight acre area known as the Callahan property of the Ellisville Superfund Site located in Wildwood, Missouri, from the National Priorities List (“NPL”) continues to stir the community. Background In …
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FTC Issues Privacy Tool, Guidance for Health-Related Mobile Apps
| Professional Liability | Complex Torts & Product Liability | Intellectual Property
Only days after the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) adopted a notice of proposed rulemaking to establish privacy guidelines applicable to Internet service providers (ISPs),1 the Federal Trade Commission (FTC) took two actions on the privacy front that will affect a smaller, but fast growing, industry: developers of mobile health applications. Given the pervasive use of …
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International Dioxin Developments
| Commercial Litigation | Complex Torts & Product Liability
Decision on Proposed Waste-to-Energy Facility in Ireland Is Expected in July A decision on a proposal to develop a waste-to-energy facility in Ireland is expected in July. Background Indaver Ireland has proposed to develop a 240,000 ton waste-to-energy facility in Ringaskiddy, County Cork, Ireland, known as the Ringaskiddy Resource Recovery Center. This would be Ireland’s …
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Dioxin: State Developments
| Commercial Litigation | Complex Torts & Product Liability
Florida DEP Proposing Revisions to Surface Water Quality Criteria Florida’s Department of Environmental Protection (“DEP”) is initiating rulemaking to consider proposed revisions to the DEP’s human health-based surface water quality criteria. Some environmental groups have expressed concerns that the proposed revisions will damage the state’s rivers, lakes, streams, and coastal waters and that they are …
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The Science of Dioxin
| Commercial Litigation | Complex Torts & Product Liability
FAO and WHO Determine That Glyphosate Is Unlikely to Pose Carcinogenic Risk to Humans from Exposure through Diet The Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations (“FAO”) Panel of Experts on Pesticide Residues in Food and the Environment and the World Health Organization (“WHO”) Core Assessment Group on Pesticide Residues have determined that glyphosate …
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Dioxin Developments
| Commercial Litigation | Complex Torts & Product Liability
President Obama, His Vietnam Visit, and Dioxin President Obama’s historic visit to Vietnam in May at the invitation of President Tran Dai Quang was notable for many reasons, from the discussions about the Trans-Pacific Partnership trade deal to the United States’ decision to lift the arms embargo on Vietnam. It also was notable for the …
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Dioxin in the Courts
May 23, 2016 | Commercial Litigation | Complex Torts & Product Liability
Glyphosate Makes Quaker Oats’ “100% Natural” Claims False, Proposed Class Actions Assert Proposed consumer protection class action lawsuits filed in federal courts in New York and California against The Quaker Oats Company contend that its oatmeal products are not “100% Natural” and that its oats are not grown using “eco-friendly” methods that pose “less risk …
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International Dioxin Developments
| Commercial Litigation | Complex Torts & Product Liability
Smoke from Landfill Fire in St. Maarten Reportedly Contained Dioxin Smoke from an April fire at the landfill in St. Maarten reportedly contained dioxin. The St. Maarten News reported that “toxic smoke” from the fire contained “dioxins,” which it characterized as “carcinogenic substances that could cause cancer.” It noted that people living downwind from the …
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The Science of Dioxin
| Commercial Litigation | Complex Torts & Product Liability
Study Finds That Levels of PCDD, PCDF, and PCBs Generally Have Decreased Over Past Decade The levels of polychlorinated dibenzo-p-dioxin (“PCDD”) and polychlorinated dibenzofuran (“PCDF”) as well as polychlorinated biphenyl (“PCB”) in foodstuffs have decreased over the past decade in many countries, according to a paper in press with the Journal of Food and Drug …
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Dioxin Developments
| Commercial Litigation | Complex Torts & Product Liability
Natural Resource Defense Council Scientists Are “Lying in the Weeds,” Author Says A “long-running scare campaign” against the commonly-used herbicide 2,4-D is being conducted by the Natural Resources Defense Council (“NRDC”) and other environmental groups, according to an article posted on the website of the American Council on Science and Health (“ACSH”), a national, non-profit, …
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The Science of Dioxin
April 22, 2016 | Commercial Litigation | Complex Torts & Product Liability
Study Asserts That New Class of Fungicides Plays Role in Autism and Neurodegenerative Diseases Scientists at the UNC School of Medicine are reporting that a class of commonly used fungicides produces gene expression changes similar to those in people with autism and neurodegenerative conditions, including Alzheimer’s disease and Huntington’s disease. Background The study, published in …
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Dioxin: Regulatory Developments
| Commercial Litigation | Complex Torts & Product Liability
EPA Proposes to Remove Missouri Property from NPL The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (“EPA”) Region 7 has issued a “Notice of Intent to Delete” an eight acre area known as the Callahan property, Operable Unit 3 (“OU3”) (Parcel ID 22U220242), of the Ellisville Superfund Site located in Wildwood, Missouri, from the National Priorities List (“NPL”). …
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Dioxin Developments
| Commercial Litigation | Complex Torts & Product Liability
Modern Farmer Asks: Are GMOs Really That Bad? An article by Brian Barth in Modern Farmer, entitled, “Still Life with Mass Hysteria: Are GMOs Really That Bad?,” has some interesting thoughts about GMOs, or “genetically modified organisms.” Highlights of the Article Mr. Barth noted early in his article that the results of a Consumer Reports …
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FCC Proposed Rules That Impact Everyone’s Online Privacy
April 19, 2016 | Professional Liability | Complex Torts & Product Liability | Intellectual Property
“Broadband Internet access service” (BIAS) is the essential conduit for the conduct of our daily personal and private lives, without which all Internet activity comes to a stop. Indeed, the Federal Communications Commission recently referred to BIAS as “the most significant communications technology of today.”1 Nevertheless, because BIAS is the road on which Internet traffic …
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Dioxin in the Courts
March 22, 2016 | Commercial Litigation | Complex Torts & Product Liability
Cerro Flow Seeks Dioxin Survey Before Bellwether Trials Cerro Flow Products, a manufacturer of copper tube for the plumbing, HVAC, refrigeration, and industrial markets, has asked the Illinois court hearing pollution claims against it to survey random plaintiffs to determine whether dioxin is present in their blood. Background Plaintiffs in an Illinois state court in …
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The Science of Dioxin
| Commercial Litigation | Complex Torts & Product Liability
Paper Claims that IUL TCDD Exposure Sensitized Mice to Urinary Tract Dysfunction A study published in the journal Toxicological Sciences reportedly has found that in utero and lactational (“IUL”) exposure to 2,3,7,8-tetrachlorodibenzo-p-dioxin (“TCDD”) sensitized genetically-susceptible mice to exogenous-hormone-induced urinary tract dysfunction later in life. The Paper The authors of the paper, “In utero and Lactational TCDD …
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Dioxin Developments
| Commercial Litigation | Complex Torts & Product Liability
EPA Finalizes Passaic River Cleanup The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (“EPA”) has finalized a plan to remove 3.5 million cubic yards of sediment from the lower eight miles of the Passaic River in New Jersey, followed by capping that entire stretch of river bottom. Background The lower 17 miles of the Passaic River, which stretches …
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New York Labor Law Bulletin
March 4, 2016 | Complex Torts & Product Liability | General Liability
First Department Holds that Worker Is Entitled to Partial Summary Judgment under Labor Law § 240(1) For Injuries Sustained in Fall from Prime Mover In Somereve v. Plaza Constr. Corp., 2016 N.Y. App. Div. LEXIS 1231 (1st Dep’t 2016), plaintiff was injured when operating a prime mover to hoist a load of bricks onto a …
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The EU-U.S. Data Protection Dispute and Possible Resolution
February 18, 2016 | Professional Liability | Complex Torts & Product Liability | Intellectual Property
Early in February, the European Commission and the U.S. government agreed on a new framework for transatlantic data flows, which they are referring to as the “EU-U.S. Privacy Shield.” Lawyers advising clients with an online presence (i.e., almost all lawyers and almost all clients) typically have had little reason to be concerned about the agreement, …
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The Science of Dioxin
February 17, 2016 | Commercial Litigation | Complex Torts & Product Liability
Study Finds Glyphosate Is Most Used Pesticide in the United States A study has concluded that the pesticide in the United States with the most “intensive and widespread use” is glyphosate, and that it likely will “remain the most widely applied pesticide worldwide for years to come.” The Study Charles M. Benbrook, formerly a research …
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Dioxin in the Courts
| Commercial Litigation | Complex Torts & Product Liability
Now, Seattle Sues Monsanto As we have previously observed, the San Diego Unified Port District and the cities of San Diego and San Jose, California, as well as the city of Spokane Washington, among others, have sued the Monsanto Company, seeking to hold it responsible for damage they alleged had been caused by polychlorinated biphenyls (“PCBs”). …
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International Dioxin Developments
| Commercial Litigation | Complex Torts & Product Liability
Halalt First Nation Alleging Dioxin Pollution by Canadian Paper Mill On February 1, 2016, Halalt First Nation filed a notice of a civil claim in the Supreme Court of British Columbia against Catalyst Paper, British Columbia, and Canada, alleging that they had failed to protect Halalt’s Aboriginal Rights and title from the “toxic effects of …
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Dioxin: Legislative Developments
| Commercial Litigation | Complex Torts & Product Liability
Ann Arbor City Council Adopts Resolution Revamping Water Standards The city council in Ann Arbor, Michigan, has unanimously passed a resolution calling on the Michigan Department of Environmental Quality (“DEQ”) to adopt new standards for groundwater and soil cleanup that would include reducing the permissible levels of 1,4 Dioxane to 3.5 parts per billion (“ppb”) …
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Dioxin Developments
| Commercial Litigation | Complex Torts & Product Liability
Health Department’s Study of Potential Cancer Cluster in Upstate New York Nears Completion A study by the New York State Department of Health to determine whether or not there is a “cancer cluster” in the Kuyahoora Valley in upstate New York is expected to be finished by the middle of this year. Background New York …
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Dioxin in the Courts
January 27, 2016 | Complex Torts & Product Liability
Monsanto Sues California to Prevent Listing of Glyphosate Under California’s Prop 65 Monsanto Company is taking legal action to prevent what it says is “a flawed listing” of the herbicide glyphosate under California’s Proposition 65 (“Prop 65”), which requires the state to maintain a “list of chemicals known to the state of California to cause …
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International Dioxin Developments
| Complex Torts & Product Liability
American University of Beirut Study Claims High Carcinogen Levels Are Near Open Waste Dump Fires Researchers in Lebanon are reporting increased levels of dioxins and polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons (“PAHs”) in the air as a result of the burning of trash in open fires. Background The rising number of waste dumpsites in Lebanon in the absence …
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Dioxin: Legislative Developments
| Complex Torts & Product Liability
Washington Legislature Should Raise Toxic Materials Tax to Fund Cleanups, Paper Contends A newspaper in the State of Washington, The Olympian, has criticized the state legislature for diverting funds intended for the Port of Olympia’s future cleanup of Budd Inlet and using them for other purposes. Background A $6 million state grant to begin work …
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Dioxin Developments
| Commercial Litigation | Complex Torts & Product Liability
Montana Proposes to List Blackfoot Post Yard on State’s Cleanup List The Montana Department of Environmental Quality (“DEQ”) has given notice of its intent to list the Blackfoot Post Yard near Lincoln, Montana, on the state’s Comprehensive Environmental Cleanup and Responsibility Act (“CECRA”) priority list. Background The Blackfoot Post Yard is near the east end …
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Dioxin in the Courts
December 27, 2015 | Complex Torts & Product Liability
China Petrochemical and Taiwan Ministry Ordered to Pay $5 Million for Alleged Dioxin Pollution The Tainan District Court, in Taiwan, has ordered China Petrochemical Development Corp (“CPDC”) and the Ministry of Economic Affairs (“MOEA”) to pay NT$168.17 million (US$5.65 million) to more than 300 individuals who claimed that they had been affected by dioxin near …
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The Science of Dioxin
| Complex Torts & Product Liability
Paper Proposes “Key Characteristics” of Carcinogens – Epidemiological Evidence Not Required A paper published in “Environmental Health Perspectives” entitled, “Key Characteristics of Carcinogens as a Basis for Organizing Data on Mechanisms of Carcinogenesis,” has proposed 10 key characteristics that, it said, are “commonly exhibited by established human carcinogens.” Background The paper is by Martyn T. …
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Dioxin Developments
| Complex Torts & Product Liability
EFSA Concludes that Glyphosate Is “Unlikely to Pose a Carcinogenic Hazard to Humans” The European Food Safety Authority (“EFSA”) has concluded its peer review of the pesticide risk assessment of glyphosate as requested by the European Commission (“EC”) and has concluded that glyphosate is “unlikely to pose a carcinogenic hazard to humans” and that the …
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Standing to Assert Claims for Online Privacy Breaches
December 15, 2015 | Professional Liability | Complex Torts & Product Liability | Intellectual Property
Many believe that we are on the precipice of a deluge of litigation—both individual and multiparty/class action—concerning how an individual’s data is handled and the remedy, if any, if that data is misused or wrongfully disclosed. A case recently argued before the U.S. Supreme Court involves the intersection of the Internet and privacy laws and …
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The Science of Dioxin
September 30, 2015 | Appeals | Complex Torts & Product Liability
Texas Panel Recommends Against San Jacinto River Cancer Cluster Studies A panel convened by the Texas Department of State Health Services has recommended that there should not be any studies to determine if there are cancer clusters near the San Jacinto River. The panel determined that there were insufficient cancer diagnoses to conclude that they …
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Dioxin in the Courts
August 31, 2015 | Appeals | Complex Torts & Product Liability
Federal Circuit Court Rejects Request to Broaden VA Regulation on Herbicide Exposure for Vietnam Veterans Who Served Near Korean DMZ The U.S. Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit has rejected a request to broaden a regulation issued in 2011 by the Department of Veterans Affairs (“VA”) that provides a presumption of herbicide exposure for …
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International Dioxin Developments
July 31, 2015 | Appeals | Complex Torts & Product Liability
Monsanto Empanels Group to Review IARC Classification of Glyphosate Earlier this year, the International Agency for Research on Cancer (“IARC”) classified the herbicide glyphosate as “probably carcinogenic to humans” (Group 2A). Now, Monsanto is reportedly forming a panel of scientists to review the analysis of the IARC, the specialized cancer agency of the World Health …
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The Science of Dioxin
| Appeals | Complex Torts & Product Liability
Paper Finds Loss of Tiparp Increased Sensitivity to Dioxin Toxicity and Lethality A paper published in The Journal of Biological Chemistry has concluded that the loss of the mono-ADP-ribosyltransferase, Tiparp, increased sensitivity to dioxin-induced steatohepatitis and lethality. Tiparp is an aryl hydrocarbon receptor (“AHR”) repressor, but its role in dioxin toxicity has been unknown. Now, …
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From the Experts
| Appeals | Complex Torts & Product Liability
Guest article for the Dioxin newsletter written by Michael E. Ginevan, Ph.D. and Deborah K. Watkins, M.S. Texas Health Department Report on Cancer Occurrence in East Harris County: An Expert Analysis Residents near the San Jacinto River Waste Pits (“SJRWP”) Superfund site expressed concern to the Texas Department of State Health Services (“DSHS”) about a …
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Dioxin Developments
| Appeals | Complex Torts & Product Liability
Legislators Announce New Push for “Blue Water” Vietnam Vets U.S. Senator Kirsten Gillibrand (D-N.Y.) and two members of the House of Representatives are pushing to pass legislation to make Navy veterans from the Vietnam War known as “Blue Water” vets who claim that they were exposed to Agent Orange eligible to receive disability and health …
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Court Overturns ‘Threat’ Conviction, But Leaves Mens Rea Standard Unclear
June 16, 2015 | Professional Liability | Complex Torts & Product Liability | Intellectual Property
The U.S. Supreme Court has ventured into the world of violent online speech. On June 1, in Elonis v. United States,1 the court overturned a defendant’s criminal conviction for communicating threats on Facebook. The court ruled that a mens rea standard of negligence was insufficient to allow the conviction to stand, but it did not …
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The Science of Dioxin
May 31, 2015 | Appeals | Complex Torts & Product Liability
French Study Finds No Dioxin-Breast Cancer Link French researchers have found no association between estimated dietary dioxin exposure and breast cancer risk among a group of women studied. A research article published in Breast Cancer Research has found no association between estimated dietary dioxin exposure and breast cancer risk among the so-called “E3N cohort,” an …
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Managing Product Liability in the Chemicals Sector
March 31, 2015 | Complex Torts & Product Liability
Paul Majkowski, a Partner in the Firm’s Litigation & Appeals Practice Group, participated in a mini-roundtable article entitled, “Managing Product Liability in the Chemicals Sector.” Please click the link below to view the Article. Adobe Reader is required to view the bulletin. If Adobe Reader is not installed on your PC, click here to download …
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Carnaby v. Goodyear Offers a New Jurisdictional Twist
February 25, 2015 | Appeals | Complex Torts & Product Liability
AMERICAN BAR ASSOCIATION – SECTION OF LITIGATION – MASS TORTS   The Carnaby v. Goodyear Tire and Rubber Co. action involving purported toxic workplace exposures in France presents something of a new strategic paradigm for the U.S. jurisdictional restrictions evolving out of the Daimler/Kiobel/Goodyear Dunlop line of cases. Carnaby v. Goodyear Tire and Rubber Co., No. …
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Tech Tools Are Increasingly Used to Disseminate Notice
February 17, 2015 | Professional Liability | Complex Torts & Product Liability | Intellectual Property
Federal Rule of Civil Procedure 23 requires two forms of class notice. Rule 23(c)(2) requires notice to a potential class member that a class has been certified and substance of the class claims. Rule 23(e) requires notice that a settlement has been negotiated, which will require court approval, and the steps that each potential class …
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International Litigation of Product Liability Claims
October 31, 2014 | Appeals | Complex Torts & Product Liability
Paul Majkowski and Lawrence Han authored an article entitled, “International Litigation of Product Liability Claims: Korea,” which was published in the November 2014 issue of DRI For the Defense. Please click the link below to read “International Litigation of Product Liability Claims.” Adobe Reader is required to view the bulletin. If Adobe Reader is not installed on your PC, …
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Circuit’s Decision Clarifies Law Of Contributory Cybersquatting
October 28, 2014 | Privacy, Data & Cyber Law | Professional Liability | Complex Torts & Product Liability | Intellectual Property
Nearly 15 years ago, Congress passed the Anticybersquatting Consumer Protection Act (“ACPA”).[1] The ACPA amended the federal trademark law known as the Lanham Act by adding two new causes of action aimed at cybersquatting.[2] Under the ACPA, a person may be civilly liable “if … that person has a bad faith intent to profit from …
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Court Addresses Bitcoin, Other Novel Online Technology Issues
August 19, 2014 | Professional Liability | Complex Torts & Product Liability | Intellectual Property
Online technology, as this column frequently has noted, presents numerous challenges to attorneys during litigation,[1] while managing their firms and marketing their services,[2] and in trying to keep up with the newest legal developments and rulings.[3]  A recent decision in a case of first impression by Judge Katherine B. Forrest of the U.S. District Court …
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